Paying 500 USD is a lot to pay for a drone, or is it? In this day and age, you don’t have to shell out $1,000 USD or more to pay for the best drone. If you think 500 USD is a lot to pay, then I highly recommend going to one of my other budget reviews, but if it’s a perfect price range for you, let’s get to finding you the best drone under 500 USD.
There are a lot of different drone models to choose from, making the task seem more frustrating and confusing than fun. If you’re like me, choosing one drone from a large number of them is a difficult task, to say the least.
With this in mind, I’ve created a review to showcase nothing but the best of the best where the best drone under 500 USD is concerned. The list isn’t ranked from my top to least favorite, so feel free to browse and scroll around as you see fit.
FAQ About The Best Drone Under 500 USD
If you don’t see an answer to your question listed below in my FAQ section, let me know and I’ll do my best to give you one!
Do I need to register my drone with the FAA?
Because I don’t want to give you the wrong answers to this question, or misinform you whatsoever, click here for all the information you’ll need on registering your drone, the FAA’s rules and regulations, etc.
Do I have to carry my drone license with me everywhere when I fly?
If you were required to register your drone and obtain a license then, yes, you absolutely have to carry it with you everywhere you go when your drone is in the air and you are at the controls.
Which is the best drone under 500 USD?
In my honest opinion, I don’t have a top favorite for this category, but I am more particular about the Phantom 3 Standard by DJI because of everything you can do with it and what it has to offer otherwise.
Best Drones Under 500
Narrowing your search down with a budget is always a good idea. It gives you a price range to stick to and helps you to stick to one general price category instead of blindly looking through everything all at once.
DJI Phantom 3 Standard
The Phantom 3 Standard by the powerhouse manufacturer DJI will run you around $450, but let me tell you, it’s worth every penny you’ll spend on it. DJI is a known drone manufacturer that brings everything to the table all at once.
What I like best about the Phantom Standard 3 by DJI would have to be that it literally looks, feels, and handles like a drone that would cost hundreds more, if not over $1000 or so.
Unfortunately, what I’m not a fan of is the fact that it’s a very sensitive drone because of the transmitter, smartphone or tablet, and the drone itself all connected through WiFi. There’s bound to be problems, so make sure you’re careful with what you’re doing.
Once again DJI takes a spot in my best drone for under 500 USD review, but this time it’s with the Spark. Keep in mind I’m reviewing only the drone, not the transmitter included with the drone, so make sure you remind yourself of this before you make your purchase. It’ll cost you approximately $375, which is, in my humble opinion, an insanely cheap price for everything you’re getting.
I love the Spark by DJI because it takes the place of the best video drone under 500 USD in my heart. It’s got a ton of useful features that go together with taking videos, photos, you name it. Seriously, it has a feature for just about anything you’ll want to do with it!
What I’m not a fan of is the fact that users have reported that the life of a single battery is basically exaggerated by DJI. To be more exact, you’re looking at only around 8 to 12 minutes of battery life instead of the advertised 16 minutes.
I’d like to mention right away that the Solo by 3DR I’ll be reviewing below is the one without the gimbal installed, so you’ll have to purchase that separately if you want it. If you’re only purchasing the quadcopter itself, you’re looking at a price range of around $230, making it one of the more expensive options in my review.
It’s no secret that the Solo by 3DR is one of the best drones under 500 USD, even if you can’t shoot videos or take pictures with it unless you have a GoPro mounted and the gimbal.
However, what I don’t like is the fact that a scarily high number of users have reported that dealing with the manufacturer is an absolute nightmare. Apparently, their customer service is seriously lacking in all departments, so hopefully, you don’t have an issue that requires their help if you make the purchase.
Parrot Bebop 2
The Bebop 2 by Parrot is cutting it pretty close to our 500 USD budget, coming in with a price of around $448. Even though it’s a tight squeeze budget-wise, it’ll always be one of the best drone for under 500 I’ve had the pleasure of reviewing.
What I love most about the Bebop 2 by Parrot is that it has a lot of cool things to do with it. Even though you have to pay a minimal fee to unlock some of the features in the FreeFlightPro app, it’s most definitely worth it and I highly recommend it!
Unfortunately, the WiFi connection can be a bit spotty, as a lot of users have previously reported. Because of this, it’s recommended that you never fly it under anything, such as a tree, for example.
The Breeze by Yuneec has a current price that shocked me when I first saw it. It’s only going for $230 right now! That’s a price that will have you turn your head so fast your neck may snap. Seriously, this drone is amazing and I recommend it to anyone who’s even remotely interested in buying a drone.
The Best Drone for Under 500
Drones have come a very long way when you really think about it. The massive amount of technology that goes into them, making them capable of extraordinary things at a lower price than ever before ensures that everyone can afford a drone these days.
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